Cecile Barker has bad news from the Eleventh Circuit. They have upheld the Tax Court’s disallowance of his multi-million dollar net operating loss deduction (NOL) largely generated by SoBe Entertainment LLC. SoBe Entertainment is a record label that has represented numerous artists included Brooke Hogan, daughter of Hulk Hogan. The indirect Hulk Hogan connection makes Mr. Barker a tangential figure in a fascinating story you can read about in Conspiracy – Peter Thiel, Hulk Hogan, Gawker and the Anatomy of Intrigue by Ryan Holiday. For purposes of this article, we will stick to the tax story which began with a Tax Court opinion in 2018, which I covered previously.
Voter registration, a drivers license, and day counting are what come to mind when people think about residence for state income tax purposes. There is no question that those basics are very important and ignoring them can kill your cause. Nonetheless, many other factors can enter into a determination, including church attendance and pets. That’s because you will generally be a resident of the state in which you have your “domicile.” And domicile as a concept borders on the mystical. It is your true home, it remains your domicile until you abandon it and establish a new one.
Yet, establishing your domicile in a state with no (or low) income taxes can be lucrative. In some cases, this can represent millions of dollars all by avoiding state income tax. The natural progression of a business owner’s life can also include exiting said business at substantial profit. Your domicile at the time of the transaction can be pivotal in determining how much of that profit you’ll be left with in retirement.
To learn more about how to do this, keep reading.